Restate the Problem
The problem lies with the fact recent college graduates pursuing professional fields in the Arts, lack experience working with clients in the real-world. College Graduates are finding it hard to get a job because the lack of experience makes them less reliable and employable, (Lindzon & Lindzon, 2015). This is even more true when it comes to a very specific area of mixed creative careers in Graphic Design, Photography, and Video Production. College graduates pursuing independent work in the field really don't know what they're getting into which can backfire on them and take them for a true beating with serious consequences.
Many employers are willing to train a “culture”, and they spend lots of money and time seeking and training new-hires about their company strategies, policies, and mission, (Hiring Experienced vs Inexperienced Employees — Which Is Better?, 2019). Employers can spend thousands of dollars training their workforce, but when it comes to the marketing, or public relations departments, they expect when they hire people responsible for driving the product or services globally, to be ready to hit the ground running. Lack of experience can have greater consequences for all parties involved whether it falls on the creative professional who makes a bad design decision, or a tragic mistake that could have been prevented with prior knowledge of what to expect. These mistakes cost time and money.
Employers expect to hire professionals out of college who know what they are doing. Without experience, students only have the tools. It’s like owning a gun with no idea how to use it. One mistake can cost you everything.
Furthermore, as things move towards a digital era where millions of jobs are being replaced by technology, software, and AI, much of the workforce is lacking skills and will require new training, (Millions of Americans Have Lost Jobs in the Pandemic — And Robots and AI Are Replacing Them Faster Than Ever, n.d.).
To speak even more directly to the current times, COVID19 has impaired the economy and has forced employees to seek new skills and training, with a projection of over 375 million workers across the globe to have to make this shift as well by 2030, (COVID-19 and Reskilling the Workforce | McKinsey, n.d.).
Employers were already identifying a skills gap with recent graduates who were coming in at entry level positions way under prepared for the job demands, (Cutter, 2019). Students in the Arts will find the times even more challenging with the increase in people being trained in competing areas and those with more skills are getting the job, (“Creative Fields,” 2020)
Employers are seeking the workforce who is ready and overqualified rather than underprepared to handle things in this sudden state of emergency to adapt to the current times.
How can Community Colleges and Universities teach designerly thinking as a process we practice every day, which in turn, will improve the quality of critical thinking that can be applied to immediate challenges graduates face when they enter the workforce? (Michael Lissack, 2019)
Students need a space to apply what they’re learning and gain feedback while they’re in school, and able to make mistakes. They need the opportunity to apply design thinking processes in the classroom, challenge ideas, and test them, but most important they need to reflect on the things that were successful, and the things that weren’t in order to improve their abilities to problem solve and think critically about their design decisions. This process of learning through observation, application, and reflection, gives greater perspective and understanding of all the moving parts, and offers opportunity to work through challenges under guidance and with the support of other active learners.
Hiring Experienced vs Inexperienced Employees—Which is Better? (2019, February 26). 4 Corner Resources. https://www.4cornerresources.com/blog/hiring-experienced-vs-inexperienced-employees/
Lindzon, J., & Lindzon, J. (2015, October 1). Why Do Employers Expect More Of Entry-Level Employees Than Ever Before? Fast Company. https://www.fastcompany.com/3051716/why-are-employers-expecting-more-of-entry-level-employees
BRIDGING THE GAP ARTICLE: https://scholarscompass.vcu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1109&context=jmsce_vamsc
COVID-19 and reskilling the workforce | McKinsey. (n.d.). Retrieved October 8, 2020, from https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/organization/our-insights/to-emerge-stronger-from-the-covid-19-crisis-companies-should-start-reskilling-their-workforces-now
Creative Fields: The Pandemic Job Search. (2020, May 4). Cawley Career Education Center. https://careercenter.georgetown.edu/announcements/news/creative-fields-the-pandemic-job-search/
Hiring Experienced vs Inexperienced Employees—Which is Better? (2019, February 26). 4 Corner Resources. https://www.4cornerresources.com/blog/hiring-experienced-vs-inexperienced-employees/Lindzon , J., & Lindzon, J. (2015, October 1)
Why Do Employers Expect More Of Entry-Level Employees Than Ever Before? Fast Company. https://www.fastcompany.com/3051716/why-are-employers-expecting-more-of-entry-level-employees
Michael Lissack. (2019).
Understanding Is a Design Problem: Cognizing from a Designerly Thinking Perspective Part 1.
Millions of Americans Have Lost Jobs in the Pandemic—And Robots and AI Are Replacing Them Faster Than Ever. (n.d.). Time. Retrieved October 8, 2020, from https://time.com/5876604/machines-jobs-coronavirus/